BeFriending Creation

Quarterly newsletter of Quaker Earthcare Witness

Volume 32, Number 4
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October-November-December 2019

This issue of BeFriending Creation invites us to reconnect with the land, the trees, and the soil, to "find steady ground" in our spiritual practices and in our communities. Enjoy an issue filled with great Quaker writers and thinkers. 

Here's a message from QEW's clerk, Mary Jo Klingel:

“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”  

Friends that I talk with lately have been asking, “Where is the hope?” and saying that they need a sense of hope to carry on with their work.

Hope was everywhere at the Climate Strike in Charlotte on Friday, September 20th. It was a beautiful day, cool and clear. Many of the Earthcare communities in Charlotte were represented, with high school and college-aged young folks, and families, and plenty of grey hair as well. I had heard that the organizers were hoping for a hundred people to come out for the strike, and would have been thrilled with two hundred.  There was a parade, march, and dance around City Hall with strikers holding their banners high and chanting. One fellow from 350.org said he counted as everyone went past.  His count was 480 marchers! All day, people were talking, laughing, hugging, celebrating our connections and our hope.

For those other days when hope is hard to find, we need only look to nature to comfort us.  Yes, the darkness comes; in the city it is hard to see the stars.  But, reliably, the dawn does come again, and the birds do sing and another day of possibilities unrolls itself before us.  Whatever the fear and hopelessness and grief of the day before, we have the comfort of the dawn for each new day, and we have our gratitude for that dawn. This issue of BeFriending Creation highlights how Friends find strength and wisdom in their surroundings, taking special comfort in the trees and soil. 

For myself, I take my comfort where I can find it.  A favorite source is Alice in Wonderland (Lewis Carroll):  

“There is no use trying,” said Alice. “One cannot believe in impossible things.”

“I daresay you haven’t had much practice,” replied the Queen.

“When I was your age, I always did it for an hour a day. Why, sometimes I have believed six impossible things before breakfast.”  

—Mary Jo Klingel, Clerk